Sikh Gurdwara -
A Sikh Gurdwara
A Gurdwara is a place of assembly and worship for Sikhs. People from all faiths are welcomed in Sikh Gurdwaras. Each Gurdwara has a Darbar Sahib where the current and everlasting guru of the Sikhs, the scripture Guru Granth Sahib, is placed on a Takhat in a prominent central position. Ragis recite, sing, and explain the verses from the Guru Granth Sahib, in the presence of the congregation. Visitors to the Gurdwara remove their shoes and cover their heads before entering the main hall (Diwan Hall). Sikhs will bow to the Holy Book, the Sri – Guru Granth Sahib as the first thing they do, touching the floor with their forehead.
The morning service begins with the singing of Asa Di Var, a hymn written by Guru Nanak, founder of Sikhism. Hymn-singing is called Kirtan and is an essential part of Sikh worship. A sermon or talk usually comes next.
The sermon is usually based on a theme from Sikh history. This is followed by the singing of Anand Sahib, a hymn written by Guru Amar Das, the Third Guru. The congregation then stands with eyes closed facing the Guru Granth Sahib for prayer. During the prayer the word Waheguru (Punjabi for ‘praise to the Guru’) is often repeated (Ardas).
After a prayer, the Guru Granth Sahib is opened at a random page and the hymn found at the top of the left-hand page (Vak or Hukam) is read. The text is considered to be a relevant lesson for the day (Hukam).